OF LITTLE BOATS AND CATTLE! Mark 4: 35-41

What fun to discover a new detail in the story of Jesus.  I’m amazed at how many fresh findings I make reading the same old stories for the umpteenth time.  Like the one about Jesus calming the storm on the Sea of Galilee.  Jesus shares some parables before telling the disciples to get in their boat and head to the other side.  Both Matthew and Luke relate the same story.

We know what happens.  A fierce storm stampedes through the surrounding hills, sucking through that 680′ below sea level lake, whose whitecapped waves toss the boat around as all on-board fear imminent death.  Except for Jesus.  He stills the storm.  And teaches who is Lord of Creation.  He is!

So, what about that new find?  All details, located in those three Gospels, match.  Except for one.  I’ve never noticed it before.  It’s at the end of Mark 4:36.  Nothing really earthshattering.  Only an addendum about ‘other boats’ heading across the lake.  Not just the one with Jesus and the Twelve on board.  ‘Other boats’.

So what?  Big deal?  It is to me.  What I see here is God’s mercy to others.  Not just to those in His group alone.  Like the Lord saving the ultra-pagan city of Ninevah in Jonah’s story.  Its last verse reveals the heart of God, concerned about those hundreds of thousands of Ninevites, along with all their cattle.  Cattle?  Cows?  So what?  Where’s the beef?!

Yes, God cares about everything in His creation.  From soup to nuts.  Even boatloads of others also in danger.  Animals.  Needy people then and today.  Those tossed and pitched about in life’s storms.  Me and you.

He loves us.  Not only those Twelve of years gone by, but certainly believers of generations to come, if Jesus delays His second coming a bit longer.

That’s little old me in one of those ‘other boats’ plying turbulent waters behind the Master.  You too!  We’re about to drown.  But Jesus calms the storm for us as well.  For those in ‘other boats’.

I’m happy to be in a tiny skiff in His wake.  Don’t need to be in first-class accommodations.  No special dining reservations for me.  No.  I’m grinning from ear-to-ear just to see Jesus.

When life’s seas get rough and tumble, He calms them.  Not only for the Twelve, but also for those in ‘other boats’ nearby.  Even for ‘…many cattle as well’ (Jonah 4:11).

 

Thank you, Lord, for mercy beyond measure.  In Jesus.  Amen.

 

 

 

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